The very first reports I received about the outage, coming out of Wickenburg and Prescott, was that the ISP from Century Link went down because a car crashed into a transformer. Shortly after that, reports stated that a construction crew hit a power line causing Internet service to go down. From the Phoenix media, we now know that this was the work of “vandals” who discovered where cables, buried several feet underground,were located in the midst of rough terrain. These “vandals” subsequently cut through the Internet cables which were inches to a foot thick and this was the cause this massive outage.
The event had a crippling effect on local communities from central to northern Arizona.
-911 service and the communications of first responders were taken down.
-Point of sale debit/credit card transactions could not be initiated due to the outage.
-ATM’s did not work.
-Banks were not able to access their computers and were forced to issue paper receipts for any deposit.
-All cell phone providers were inoperable except for Verizon Wireless.
-Most cable companies were not able to carry programming (e.g. Phoenix TV stations) due to the takedown of live streaming. The same was also true for many radio stations.
In short, businesses, schools and personal lives were totally disrupted. Yet, the national coverage afforded to this major event was negligible as I discovered after calling friends and colleagues from across the country to gauge their reaction. As of yesterday afternoon, most people had not heard about this event. I am not surprised as similar events transpired in both Florida and Oklahoma, AT THE SAME TIME! Steve Quayle shared the following email with me last night which described a similar event in Oklahoma:
I just read with interest the Q Alert about phone and internet being out at mid-day from north Phoenix to Flagstaff yesterday. We dropped internet here in NW Oklahoma (outside Woodward) about mid-day yesterday as well. It happened twice, about an hour later for about 20 minutes at a time. No explanation was given by the provider (Pioneer Cellular and Internet). We have cell service, for which the data was messed up, but the towers were still operative.
About that same time, NOAA Space Weather lost data for several hours … complete blanks in their monitoring systems.
Interesting this is all going on about the same time the FCC was preparing to take over the internet.
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